Mario Leo: Football club social media, what we learnt in 2017

Mario Leo: Football club social media, what we learnt in 2017


Mario Leo is one of the best analysts in sports digital and social media. His company, Result Sports, works with many of the biggest football clubs in the world crunching crucial numbers and much more. I went to visit him near Frankfurt to discuss the trends he noticed in social media among football clubs in 2017 and what we can expect in 2018.

We discussed: 

4:02: The changing balance between Facebook, Twitter and Instagram among major football clubs. And what it means?

8:43 Why Twitter  growth is very different to Facebook

10:19 Instagram v Facebook in reach and engagement

12:00 Does Instagram's super engagement break some well-worn rules?

13:25 Making use of the numbers correctly. Harvesting data is easy, getting the right data and understanding it is harder

14:50 Do the stats prove Instagram Stories is killing off Snapchat?

18:35 The problem of Snapchat’s ‘sameness’ and Instagram 60-second video limits

20:58 The sudden loss of Facebook followers by major football clubs (and why it is a good thing). And why “Facebook should be seen as a highlights channel”

24:57 Are we in an era of mandatory pay for reach?

26:10 Reach v Engaged Users. We know the latter is this most important metric but reach stats still have value at one level

29:40 The trick you need to pull off - talking to many but treating fans as individuals

30:40 The potential of clubs charging players for content

31:20 Are players more sexy than they have ever been compared to clubs and leagues?

32:35 How Neymar has turned Ligue 1 into a globally relevant league in digital terms

35:00 Is digital now the measure of a league’s relevance?

37:25 Why football clubs need to change their internal structure. Why La Liga’s recent approach 

40:10  The one continent that almost no clubs seems to target. But the one team taking an interest

41:38 Who is doing it right among the top clubs and who is getting the biggest 'bang for their buck' lower down

43:58 What about the middle-ranking clubs? Who is getting most ‘bang for their buck’?

45:50 How to plan your digital growth with strategic goals. The ‘lost’ digital opportunity of quick trips abroad

49:50 The changing nature of digital support with fans overseas

51:03 Why older fans can’t be turned and seven to eight-year-olds is the sweet spot

52:14 Rules of thumbs that Mario uses to interpret his statistics

53:30 The overlapping stats, Facebook v YouTube views, the downside of Twitter analytics

58:40 Why he regards Amazon as a social network

59:45 The three stages of football club development in social media - adoption 2006-11, optimization 2011-15, differentiation 2015-

61:00 Predictions for 2018


Twitter competitions: TweetBinder

This graph shows the drop in Facebook following among Premier League clubs in November

Mario EPL Dec 2017.jpg
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